Halkali-Kapikule Railway Project works are continuing rapidly. 47% of the works on the Cerkezkoy-Kapikule line have been completed. The project has a strategic importance as it is located on the modern Silk Road. Kirklareli Governor Osman Bilgin said in a statement, “This transportation will be the main route of the new modern Iron Silk Road along with its hinterland.”
47% of the work on the Cerkezkoy-Kapikule line, which is under construction within the scope of the “Halkali-Kapikule Railway Project”, which will provide Turkey’s high standard railway connection with European countries, has been completed.
Kirklareli Governor Osman Bilgin said that the works within the scope of the project, which will build 53 underpasses, 59 overpasses, 16 railway bridges, 2 tunnels, 194 culverts and 3 viaducts, are continuing at full speed.
Explaining that the work is almost halfway through, Bilgin reminded that €275 million of the €530 million project was provided from the European Union grant funds.
Stating that the progress in the works on the road where the rails will be laid has reached 98%, Bilgin said, “47% of the works on the Cerkezkoy-Kapikule line, which is under construction within the scope of the Halkali-Kapikule Railway Project, have been completed. Currently, 18 kilometers of rails have been laid within the borders of our province. We aim to complete the project on December 31, 2023.”
Emphasizing that the project is very important for Turkey, Bilgin continued as follows:
“If we are to reveal the old Silk Road, Turkey is already a very important and strategic country. It is a country that is always in the spotlight. It will be the main route of the new modern Iron Silk Road along with its transportation hinterland. Our province will be a province with high opportunities in terms of both conventional and high-speed trains, with its proximity to Istanbul Airport and Burgas Port in Bulgaria, close to 3 gates in Bulgaria and 2 gates in Edirne, as well as railway gate in the logistics field. It is a very important project in the development of our country and our people.”
REDUCED FROM 3.5 HOURS TO 1.5 HOURS
With the project that will connect Edirne, Kirklareli and Tekirdag to the high-speed train network, the travel time between Halkali and Kapikule will be reduced from 8 hours to 3.5 hours for freight trains, and from 3.5 hours to 1 hour 35 minutes for passenger trains. The existing line capacity will also increase by 4 times.
With the completion of the project, it is aimed that the freight transported on the Halkali-Kapikule line will reach 9.6 million tons from 1.53 million tons per year, and the annual average number of passengers will increase from 600 thousand to 3.4 million.
€275 million of the project, whose contract was signed for €530 million, will be provided from European Union grant funds.
In the project, which will be built as 153 kilometers long double-track, with signals and electrification suitable for 200 kilometers per hour, freight and passenger trains will be able to operate. Within the scope of the project, 53 underpasses, 59 overpasses, 16 railway bridges, 2 tunnels, 194 culverts and 3 viaducts will be built.
The project was designed by taking into account all environmental measures such as preserving and reusing organic soil along the line route, making transitions for wildlife and manufacturing sound curtains.
There will be stations in Cerkezkoy, Buyukkarisan, Luleburgaz, Babaeski, Edirne and Kapikule on the line within the scope of the project, which was awarded the 2019 Inspiring Project Award in the field of “finance and funding” at the Eurasia Strategic Infrastructure Projects Leadership Forum.
Source: Sabah / Translated by Irem Yildiz